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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Some of you may be familiar with the Auto Extremest, his name is Peter De Lorenzo and he worked in automotive advertising for years. Besides his knowledge of branding cars and tapping consumers he also has a welath of knowledge about the ins and outs of the industry. No matter, on his website he had the following excerpt from a recent 500L test drive..

http://www.autoextremist.com/on-the-table1/

Dan Neil. The ace writer lambastes (deservedly) the Fiat 500L in this week's "Rumble Seat" column in The Wall Street Journal to wit: "... Actually, the 500L (front-drive, five-door liftback) corners like the world's smallest '65 Pontiac Bonneville. At engine speeds below 2,250 rpm, there is no one home torque-wise. You hit the gas and time stands still, a la "The Matrix." And the six-speed manual gearbox is the vaguest, wobbliest such mechanism I've encountered since I was winning dance contests in my three-piece suit. This thing isn't a transmission. It is an intermission." And that's our AE Quote of the Week.

Editor-in-Chief's Note: To me the 500L embodies every last cynical detail that underpins the reality of Sergio Marchionne's carpet-bagging mission to take over Chrysler. Left to their own devices, the Italians design, build and engineer unmitigated crap (I'm leaving Ferrari out of this discussion obviously). Any success that Fiat Chrysler has achieved has come on the backs of the True Believers in Auburn Hills who stayed the course through the relentless chaos rained down upon them by first Daimler, then Cerberus and now Fiat. Marchionne is quick to take credit for the "miracle" that he performed by saving "The Unfortunates" of Chrysler from themselves and that is such relentless bullshit it's laughable. The only "miracle" that happened in Auburn Hills came from the True Believers who designed, engineered and built the trucks and Jeeps that are the sole provider of profit to the otherwise crumbling FCA enterprise. And so it goes. - PMD
Now I'm not sure which iteration of the 500L was tested, but a quick glance at available engines shows that the 500L and the Renegade will be sharing the 1.4L in Turbo and Non Turbo formats, as well I know that the 500L and Renegade will share one manual option as well as the DCT...

We don't know enough to be worried yet, but FIAT does have a reputation of over promising and under delivering...
 

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Willy,

I just picked up a Dodge Dart this past weekend, it has the 1.4L Turbo and DDCT. To be honest, there is about a 1 second throttle lag, it is the drive by wire system Dodge uses.

But, here is the kicker, after that second, the car launches so quickly that I have almost lost control. It is a fun combo.

Scott
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Willy,

I just picked up a Dodge Dart this past weekend, it has the 1.4L Turbo and DDCT. To be honest, there is about a 1 second throttle lag, it is the drive by wire system Dodge uses.

But, here is the kicker, after that second, the car launches so quickly that I have almost lost control. It is a fun combo.

Scott
Indeed! Which leads me to believe that the test 500L was likely with the natural 1.4 not the turbo model, actually that makes sense because I don't believe you can get the 1.4L Turbo with three pedals, only auto or DCT...
 

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Indeed! Which leads me to believe that the test 500L was likely with the natural 1.4 not the turbo model, actually that makes sense because I don't believe you can get the 1.4L Turbo with three pedals, only auto or DCT...
I know in 2013 the Dart came with 1.4L Turbo and manual, and 2014 the Dart Aero trim (currently the only one that gets the 1.4L Turbo) comes standard with manual.

Scott
 

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i've read that the dart has a bit of a lag in the throttle.

i think this is something that could be corrected via software though
 

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Willy,

I just picked up a Dodge Dart this past weekend, it has the 1.4L Turbo and DDCT. To be honest, there is about a 1 second throttle lag, it is the drive by wire system Dodge uses.

But, here is the kicker, after that second, the car launches so quickly that I have almost lost control. It is a fun combo.

Scott
Willy,

I just picked up a Dodge Dart this past weekend, it has the 1.4L Turbo and DDCT. To be honest, there is about a 1 second throttle lag, it is the drive by wire system Dodge uses.

But, here is the kicker, after that second, the car launches so quickly that I have almost lost control. It is a fun combo.

Scott
At least it makes up for the lag later on but they really need to work on this, I wonder if it's a deal breaker for some. Did you test drive a dart before buying the one you did and did you notice the lag?
 

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At least it makes up for the lag later on but they really need to work on this, I wonder if it's a deal breaker for some. Did you test drive a dart before buying the one you did and did you notice the lag?
I test drove this one and a 2.0L. There was no comparing the two.

I think the lag people are referring to is the need for the turbo to build boost before kicking in. The acceleration "lag" is exactly how it was in my 1989 Subaru RX Turbo. It took about a second for the boost to build but once it does it rockets. There is some fine tuning but, it acts like every turbo I have driven that wasn't made for high performance.

I have been trying to keep it out of boost...it makes me sad to see my average MPGs drop by 2 to 3/10s of a gallon for 5 seconds of excitement.

I'm still feeling her out as I have driven her less then 10 times. Those of us on the Dart forum that drive the 1.4 love it. To quote one of the users on the forum, "The 1.4L is a gem of an engine"

Scott
 

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According to the readout, I'm getting 24 MPG at this time but, three things are impacting it.

1.) Not fully broke in yet
2.) I'm still learning the car
3.) The boost is too much fun to stay out of it. >:D

Scott
 
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